— Com­pre­hen­sive cov­er­age of the Hey­wood Truck Show

The Hey­wood Truck and Ute Show, part of the town’s Wood, Wine and Roses Fes­ti­val, again wel­comed a fundrais­ing con­voy ar­riv­ing from Mt Gam­bier. Peter and Di Sch­lenk write

Owner Driver - - Owner/Driver -

THE HEY­WOOD Truck and Ute Show in western Vic­to­ria kicked off only five years ago but has grown con­sis­tently, es­pe­cially over the last cou­ple of years.

The truck show’s ori­gins came about when it was in­cor­po­rated into Hey­wood’s Wood, Wine and Roses Fes­ti­val. In ad­di­tion, the 2017 event, held on Fe­bru­ary 25, was also the sec­ond oc­ca­sion that the event had been boosted by a truck con­voy ar­riv­ing from Mt Gam­bier in South Aus­tralia for the show.

The con­voy again raised money for Be­yond Blue, pre­ceded by a fundrais­ing evening at Mt Gam­bier’s Blue Lake Golf Club which raised $6000 for the char­ity.

Or­gan­iser Adam Smith says the pass­ing of Kelsey Moloney, who took her own life at age 14 in 2012, was the in­spi­ra­tion for the con­voy.

“It’s about try­ing to raise aware­ness about men­tal health and hav­ing a great time do­ing it,” Adam says.

Kelsey’s father, Shaun Moloney, drove the lead truck in the con­voy, a brand new K200 Ken­worth from the Glen Cur­ran fleet.

The ban­ner on the K200’s grille de­picted Kelsey’s im­age.

Shaun says it was Adam’s idea from the be­gin­ning.

“Adam wanted to do some­thing for men­tal health and then he heard what hap­pened to our fam­ily,” Shaun ex­plains. “He wanted do it in hon­our of my daugh­ter be­cause Mt Gam­bier was her home town.

“Kelsey died four years ago and you would never have picked her to have any is­sues. She was only 14.”

Shaun lived most of his life in Mt Gam­bier. Pre­vi­ously a line-haul man­ager for Si­mon Na­tional Car­ri­ers, he re­cently moved to Mel­bourne to take up a role as de­pot man­ager for Nolan’s In­ter­state Trans­port.

“I used to be an owner- driver in Mt Gam­bier cart­ing tim­ber,” Shaun ex­plains.

The ban­ner was auc­tioned off the night be­fore the con­voy, with Michael Brans­grove of Brans­grove Trans­port plac­ing the win­ning bid of $1000.

Shaun says he’s great mates with both the Brans­groves and the boys at JW & AT Moloney Trans­port (no re­la­tion), also from Trar­al­gon.

“The boys from Gipp­s­land – the Brans­groves and the Moloneys – are mates that I used to work with cart­ing steel. Michael is an ab­so­lute leg­end.”

Shaun be­lieves truck driv­ers in gen­eral are un­der­rated.

“They are the back­bone of our coun­try, re­ally, and have big hearts, that’s for sure.”

Michael says the event was all about sup­port­ing a mate.

“We spent a lot of time work­ing to­gether and I went to his wed­ding. It’s tragic when some­thing like this hap­pens to any fam­ily, so it’s great to be able to show some sup­port.”

Glenn ‘Yogi’ Ken­dall came across from Western Aus­tralia to not only take part in the con­voy, but was in­vited to be guest speaker at Mt Gam­bier as well. Yogi is well known for his ap­pear­ances in the Out­back

Truck­ers tele­vi­sion pro­gram, as well as be­ing the win­ner of the 2016 Sca­nia Truck Driver Com­pe­ti­tion.

Yogi’s Ken­worth T900 is a fa­mil­iar sight along the high­ways, how­ever for the con­voy he was of­fered a brand new Iveco Pow­er­star 7800, cour­tesy of OGR Trucks of Mt Gam­bier.

“It’s a real good thing,” Yogi says of the con­voy. “Any kind of pos­i­tives for the in­dus­try is what we need 100 per cent. A cause like this is fan­tas­tic.

“It’s been a re­ally dif­fi­cult 12 months for owner-driv­ers and the in­dus­try in gen­eral,” he con­tin­ues.

“De­spite this, the pas­sion is still there for me, and days like this bring that pas­sion to the fore.

“I am very hum­bled that they would want me to come down. The more I can do for the in­dus­try, the bet­ter it is.”

Hey­wood truck show or­gan­is­ers Lindy An­nett and Ta­nia Gray were pleased with the num­ber of trucks ar­riv­ing from Mt Gam­bier and other in­ter­state lo­ca­tions.

Hey­wood may not be a truck­ing hub, but there are many big rigs that pass through the ru­ral town­ship.

“Ta­nia and I are both work­ing housewives with two and five kids re­spec­tively, but we love putting the truck show to­gether,” An­nett says.

“It isn’t hard, al­though the last cou­ple of weeks have been a bit stress­ful. But it’s a great thing to be in­volved with.”

Michael Brans­grove’s stun­ning Freight­liner Coron­ado heads up an im­pres­sive ar­ray of trucks. The Coron­ado later picked up the tro­phy in the 2-5 year cat­e­gory at Hey­wood

The trucks line up, ready to de­part Mt Gam­bier for Hey­wood

in case rigs were on hand The Truck Fac­tory’s of any calami­ties

Nick and Mi­randa Rad­ford took part in the con­voy with their 2010 Ken­worth T909. The Ken­worth is kept busy cart­ing hay, cat­tle and farm ma­chin­ery. “We keep it pretty tidy so it’s only an hour to wash it. You don’t get a bet­ter rea­son to bring your truck out than this con­voy.”

From left: John Lynch, Daniel Fisher, Alex More­land, Mick Hicks, Kelvin More­land and Ross Bowen ready to drive the one-hour trip from Mt Gam­bier to Hey­wood

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